Top 100 accounting and business consulting firm Moss Adams announced Chris Schmidt as its next chairman and chief executive officer and Dick Fohn as president and chief operating officer in a planned transition that will take effect in the first half of 2013.

Schmidt will succeed current chairman and CEO Rick Anderson, who announced that he will step down to focus on his expanding role as chairman of international assurance, tax and advisory firm alliance Praxity.

As incoming CEO and chairman, Schmidt will lead the firm’s more than 1,800 personnel in 22 offices in six states.

Since 2004, Schmidt has been president and COO of Moss Adams and, prior to that, served as managing partner of the firm’s Orange County, Calif., office from 1997 to 2004. He joined that office as an assurance professional in 1986 and was admitted to the partnership in 1991.

“I’m honored and excited to have the opportunity to help lead Moss Adams forward into its second century,” Schmidt said in a statement. “I hope to continue to build on the firm’s strong industry leadership and commitment to premier client service as we seek new opportunities for growth.”

Both Schmidt and Fohn were selected by the firm’s executive committee.

Fohn has been the firm’s director of tax since November 2011 and was previously managing partner of the Bellingham, Wash., office. Admitted to the partnership in 1992, his client service practice focused on ownership succession for closely held businesses and estate planning and personal financial planning for high net-worth families and individuals. Fohn also sits on the American Institute of CPA’s Personal Financial Planning and Private Company Practice Section executive committees and is a board member of the firm’s wealth-management affiliate Moss Adams Wealth Advisors.

“The caliber of people and clients at Moss Adams makes this step a truly unique opportunity for me,” Fohn stated. “The sustainability of our business practices has taken Moss Adams to the top of the profession over the past 100 years, and our commitment to operating with integrity and offering value-added service will carry us, and our clients, into our second century.”

Rick Anderson joined Moss Adams in 1973 and went on to successive roles as director of accounting and auditing, director of operations, president and COO and then chairman and CEO in 2004. He is chairman-elect of Praxity, of which Moss Adams is a member firm, and served as vice chairman of the management board and member of the alliance’s governing council. Admitted to Moss Adams partnership in 1980, he will continue to retain that role.  

“Moss Adams has always emphasized developing top-quality talent and leadership, and I’m thrilled with the firm’s decision to name Chris and Dick to their new roles,” Anderson said in a statement. “They’re committed to growth with integrity and, with the expertise of our professionals, Moss Adams remains in a strong position for continued success.”


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